Sharon in Texas for summit with Bush

Sunday, April 10, 2005 | 
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon will meet President Bush at his Texas ranch on Monday. It is Sharon’s 10th trip to the US since taking office in 2001 but his first visit to the ranch, which is considered a special honor. Sharon will get a pat on the back from Bush over his Gaza withdrawal plan, but there's a looming dispute over settlements. Bush has criticized Israel’s plan to build 3,500 housing units to expand the biggest settlement of Ma’ale Adumim and connect it to Jerusalem. Israel is playing down the dispute. “I believe that there are mechanisms today to conduct a constructive dialogue on this issue and to come to terms,” said Sharon’s spokesman Ra'anan Gissin. Bush says the construction violates the roadmap peace plan, which calls for a settlement freeze.

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